Date for Div's evaluation set
Stephen Nell - Rapport
Peter de Villiers (Gallo Images)
Cape Town – September 28 is D-Day for Peter de Villiers.
The South African Rugby Union’s (SARU) evaluation of the beleaguered Springbok coach will take place in Johannesburg then.
“We need a pro-active plan in place for what we want on the tour at the end of the year and next year’s World Cup. It does not help we only start thinking about these issues in January next year,” said the head of SARU’s technical committee, James Stoffberg.
The evaluation of the Bok coach takes place after every tournament or tour. The alarm bells are certainly ringing for South Africa following five defeats in six matches in this year’s Tri-Nations.
South Africa also tumbled to third in the International Rugby Board’s world rankings.
SARU are still searching for answers in the wake of the disastrous Tri-Nations campaign.
De Villiers’s management team, including assistant coaches Dick Muir and Gary Gold, are also likely to be discussed.
It is not just De Villiers being evaluated this month. SARU will also evaluate Sevens coach Paul Treu and want to finalise the appointment of a national under-20 coach.
However, the issue of the Boks’ poor performances are viewed in an extremely serious light.
“For anyone that has anything to do with South African rugby, high performance is very important,” said Stoffberg, who is also SARU’s vice-president.
“Sport is about winning. The Springboks are now third on the world rankings. We are very serious about putting in place a support base to enable South Africa to win next year’s World Cup tournament.”
Stoffberg said that the evaluation would be handled in a “positive and professional” manner.
“It’s not just about criticising. The mistakes that have been made need to be rectified. We also have to build on our strengths,” said Stoffberg.
“South Africa did not have a good Tri-Nations. If you aren’t evaluated, you won’t be able to identify where you are going wrong. Rugby is a team game and you can’t blame one person for a defeat.”
Any action that SARU takes can have significant implications for South Africa’s World Cup campaign next year.
“It’s easier to become champions than to stay champions,” said Stoffberg.
Apart from the Boks’ poor performances, De Villiers’ controversial comments may also be up for discussion.